Friday, September 30, 2011

Taylor Guitar Tour

Nate getting an impromptu guitar lesson.
What the employees do on break.
New friends watching the buffer robot.
Taylor Guitars give free tours daily (M-F) and we recently went on one.  The tour lasted almost two hours, we had an awesome tour guide, and we learned a ton about how they build guitars.  Here are some of those things:
*The wood they use for the guitars comes from sustainable forests.  Sapele is one of the main types of wood they are now using.
*They make approximately 500 guitars per day.
*They make left and right handed guitars
*The work hard to match up the wood perfectly and symmetry plays a big part in how they piece the pieces of wood together.
*The fretboards are made of ebony because this material absorbs the oil from your hands.
*They use a glue that glows under a black light for checking their work.
*They use robots for some things and humans for other things and sometimes both (for example buffing is done by robots and humans).
*The scraps of wood get ground up and turned into hamster bedding.
 *Some 'b' words we learned - buffing, bracing and binding!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

In Papa's Workshop

by Allie
Nate has been tinkering lately.  He spent hours taking apart a broken cd player.  Then he asked for a "welding" lesson with our Papa (grandpa).

Tinkering at home
Soldering with Papa

I wanted to make some furniture for my Calico Critters.  So I asked my Papa if he could do a woodworking workshop with me and my friend.  Here we are working in his workshop...

Monday, September 19, 2011

Disney XD Orchestra

 This past June I had the awesome opportunity of being in a Disney commercial playing my flute!  I made tons of new friends (in fact, that's my friend Jonah in the thumbnail!) and learned a lot.  Here is the tv-spot (it's for Disney XD).  Unfortunately you can't see me that well; I'm the last flute at the end towards the center...try to find me!

If you live in Southern California, play an instrument, and you'd like to go on auditions for commercials, film, and TV, contact Jennifer Walton at Instrumental Casting.

by Carly
*Sorry to those of you who live outside the US who can not view this video.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Model Home Math

Recently we had a fun morning of what we called "model home math".  As we enjoyed walking through homes in Huntington Beach not only did we talk about the architecture, interior design, and our favorite rooms, but we talked about numbers.   What kind of numbers, you ask?  Well, we discussed square feet, numbers into the millions, and price per square foot.  We added, divided, multiplied, and found the difference.
For example, how much more would it cost to buy a house with an ocean view vs. a house without (for our favorite home it was about an $800,000 difference).  We talked about down payments, loans, monthly mortgages, interest, percentages, and taxes.  After we saw the beauty of the model homes and their views we drove by a home in the tract being completed.  We took a look at what you really get for 1.5 million dollars (the shell of a nice home with plain white walls, no interior design perks or furniture and no view - a good location though).

Carly said she'd be just fine living in an apartment by the beach.
Allie wants to buy the largest, most elegant and formal model home with all the furniture (also happens to be the most expensive).
Nate said he's okay to stay where we're at.
Micayla just wants the golf cart so she can drive herself to ballet.

A fun math site:

Monday, September 5, 2011


By Micayla
We made our annual trip down to 2nd street to paint tiles! We use them at home to put our water glasses on so we are not going through them rapidly every day (we used to get our glasses mixed up and sometimes my mom would put them in the dishwasher when we were still using them).

This year I painted a picture of a boy with a red balloon running.  Allie did a rainbow with clouds that stuck out from the tile. Carly did an underwater tile with fish and bubbles, and Nate did a sailboat. My mom painted her name on her tile with vines and leaves, it is so pretty! We are very excited to get them after they are glazed, in about a week!

Here are our glazed tiles from the last three years. Normally we only have two of our tiles (per kid) on the counter.  Each year we use our new tile (for ourselves) and our tile from the year before (for our friends).  We plan on decorating the side of our kitchen counter with the ones from previous years that we are no longer using.